The most anticipated event of the year is finally upon us, The 2022 FIFA World Cup. This years host country are known as the richest country in the world, according to the International Monetary Fund, Qatar has the highest GDP per capita in the world.In the midst of all the excitement of a new World Cup there have been quite a number of controversies surrounding Qatar from a number of construction workers meeting their untimely end to fans being upset about the ban of alcohol at stadiums.
The focus of this article is on the employment sector as well as the mistreatment of immigrant labourers. We firstly celebrate and show gratitude to Qatar for providing work opportunities to an alleged two million people. Unfortunately a number of articles and news outlets have reported that a number of labourers have passed away due to stadium related construction as well as labourers facing harsh treatment from employers.
According to BBC (2022) Qatar has constructed seven stadiums for the World Cup finals, Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor, Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Umm Al Afae, Al Janoub Stadium in Al Wakrah, Khalifa International Stadium in Aspire, Education City Stadium in Education City in Al Rayyan, Lusail Stadium in Lusail, and Al Thumama Stadium in Al Thumama. As well as a new airport, metro system, road network, and over 100 new hotels. According to Amnesty International there were about two million migrant labourers hired, coming from across Asian countries such as India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka to name a few.
Amnesty International who have been extremely observant once it was made public that workers were allegedly facing harsh working and living conditions, have spoken out about the poor conditions that immigrant workers were faced with, in 2016 after extensive investigation Amnesty International accused Qatari corporations of utilising forced labour. The ‘Kafala’ system of sponsorship-based employment in Qatar, which legally links foreign employees to their employers, is at the core of migrant workers’ exploitation.
A worker reached out to Amnesty International and stated “We don’t know what to do. We don’t have residence permits, we are here illegally. Our employer can run away at any time, he is not a Qatari national. We are heading to seven months without salary. Me, personally, I am okay, but what about my kids? Now my eldest child is at home, he cannot go to school.”
Amnesty International and others have demonstrated over the last decade how the system, which until recently prohibited employees from changing professions or even leaving the country without their employer’s approval, locks migrant workers in a loop of abuse.
The Qatari government has implemented a number of changes in collaboration with the ILO. Among these is a wage protection plan aimed to ensure that firms pay their employees on time. According to a government official, Qatar’s reforms are improving the working conditions of the majority of foreign workers. “Significant progress has been made to guarantee that the changes are successfully implemented,” added the spokeswoman.
Labour laws assist to avoid employee unhappiness by providing agreements and principles that may be utilised to successfully settle concerns with little confrontation. Employees who are treated decently and recognised for their contributions are more likely to stay with the organisation. The right recruitment agency such as InspHired ensures that they perform the same extensive research performed on candidates is performed on clients, as well.
Amidst all the chaos around the World Cup, the games have made most of it worth it. The drama with CR7, the excitement of Morocco, the heartache of losing Ghana. The 2022 World Cup has started but it is far from over we wish all the teams good luck, and an extra wish for Morocco!